Halftime Leisure

The Underrated Joy of Scrubs

March 31, 2015


Scrubs is one of the best shows on Netflix. The show follows John Dorian (J.D.), played by Zach Braff, as he goes through Sacred Heart Teaching Hospital as an intern, resident and attending doctor. A cast of characters, including a very questionable janitor, and goofy background characters, like Snoop Dogg intern and Dr. Beardface (it’s Beardfacé dammit!), create a light environment in which the show deals with some heavy topics. Throughout its eight season run Scrubs was able to poignantly deal with topics ranging from OCD to insecurity.

My First Day (Season 1, Episode 1)

The first episode of Scrubs chronicles J.D’s first day at Sacred Heart, a teaching hospital. One of the first thing he says when arrives on the job is, “Four years of pre-med, four years of med school and tons of unpaid loans have made me realize one thing, I don’t know jack”. J.D’s hesitance during his first days on the job is endearing and pretty much sums up most people’s anxiety about being plunged into the real world.

My Screw Up (Season 3, Episode 14)

This is a classic example of the Scrubs bait and switch. Jordan’s brother and Dr. Cox’s best friend, Ben, comes back into town and after 2 years of being in remission from leukemia, he hasn’t seen a single doctor. Throughout the episode Ben follows Dr. Cox around the hospital, until at the end of the episode we find that Ben had died while getting a check-up in the hospital. John C. McGinley plays Dr. Cox with such vibrancy, that when something deflates his zeal its deeply affecting. The deaths in Scrubs feel just as sudden for the viewer as they do for the characters. The show has a way of being fun and light and then pulling the rug out from under and bringing you back to earth, creating an even larger impact.

My Lunch (Season 5, Episode 20)

Dr. Cox’s breakdown after losing three patients is one of the most real moments in the series. It really puts the lyrics “I’m no superman” into perspective. J.D sees Dr. Cox as his personal hero which is why it’s so shocking when he does break down. The times when you desperately need a win and it doesn’t come can affect everyone. This episodes tackles depression in a way that’s understandable. Along with Dr. Cox’s break-down, a recurring character, Jill, dies of an overdose. Most times she appears on the show showing clear signs of depression and suicidal tendencies, only for J.D. or Dr. Cox to catch it in time and save her. In this episode they’re too late. My Lunch is one of the heavier episodes of the series but it pushes the show to really reach for new emotional territory.

My Finale: Part II (Season 9, Episode 19)

Most consider this episode the last episode of Scrubs. It was the perfect ending to the series. Tying everything together and bringing back series favorites like Laverne. The nostalgia trip at the end was a great ending to the highly successful series.

Honorable mention:

My Musical (Season 6, Episode 6)

My Musical warrants mention just because the perfection that is “Guy Love”. That song will forever be the pinnacle of Turk and J.D’s friendship and has become the theme song for extreme bromances everywhere.

Our Thanks (Season 9, Episode 13)

I do realize that season 9 has been shunned by most fans of Scrubs, and I’m inclined to agree. However, Cole, played by Dave Franco, has some great moments throughout the season that are truly hilarious.

At its best, Scrubs was deeply relatable and highly entertaining. It’s a show that I will always be able to come back to and enjoy. What separates Scrubs from the pack is the fact that it can be inherently goofy, but still pack a dramatic punch. The wide range of issues it deals with makes the show easy to connect with. I know can watch the show at any time and it’ll feel like visiting an old friend. Scrubs has the perfect mix of fun and emotion that will never get old.



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    My Finale was season 8, right?